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The Sadies return to Durango

Canadian surf and garage rock, cosmic-country and punk band The Sadies made their Durango concert debut on Nov. 5, 2013. That night, music lovers of Durango were treated to a solid blast of the aforementioned genres, a show that came with the friendly reminder of “if you like rock ’n’ roll of any variety, this is a show not to be missed.” It was loud and rocking, cool and classy.

Since that show over a decade ago, The Sadies dropped four other records, one with The Sadies backing the late Gord Downie of The Tragically Hip and another three of their own, all while touring worldwide and blowing minds via their raw musical talent; a Sadies show is one not to be missed.

If you go

WHAT: The Sadies play surf, country, psychedelic garage rock.

WHEN: 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 29.

WHERE: Animas City Theatre, 128 E. College Drive.

TICKETS: $25/$30.

MORE INFORMATION: Visit www.animascitytheatre.com.

Tragedy for the band hit on Feb. 17, 2022, when founding member, guitar player and vocalist (one of them) Dallas Good passed unexpectedly after a recent heart condition diagnosis, his death coming just months before the release of 2022’s Colder Streams, their eleventh release. They rode out the release likely with heavy heart, and thankfully have continued on. The Sadies, who are guitar player and vocalist Travis Good, bass player Sean Dean and drummer Mike Belitsky, return to the Animas City Theatre on Wednesday, May 29.

“Before he left us we had completely finished everything, down to the artwork, so it was all set to go. Originally, we just thought, ‘we got to see this through for Dallas, his last project.’ And now we’ve been seeing it through for almost two years. So yeah, we’ve been hard at it,” Travis said. “It’s good therapy for us, and we feel closer to Dallas when we’re playing live shows, than we ever did. I can hear him singing in my head on stage.”

The Sadies story begins with Travis and Dallas growing up in a musical household, their father and uncles part of The Good Brothers band, a longtime Canadian folk and bluegrass outfit. Many will rebel against the music of their parents; so Travis and Dallas turned to punk and hardcore, all while absorbing the country canon via the family band, of which Travis was a member in the 1990s.

“That’s what happens when you grow up in a house with parents who love bluegrass and country, so obviously the kids will be into hardcore and punk rock. But then quickly after playing in The Good Brothers, both me and Dallas started realizing that some of their records weren’t terrible,” Travis said. “We discovered the Burrito Brothers, Gram Parsons, classic bluegrass and stuff like Doc Watson, all from our parents’ record collection. So, that sort of drifted into it all.”

The Sadies remained a busy band throughout their now over 20-year career. They’ve dropped a load of studio albums, three of which had the engineering hand of the late and great Steve Albini – albums that walk a line of spaghetti western, twangy garage and country punk. They’ve also been a killer backing band to artists like Jon Doe, Jon Langford, Neko Case and Downie. While the band is slowly writing new material, there’s a yearning to keep finding artists to collaborate with, which is the current plan when they return to the studio.

“That’s what I’d like to do right now and see where we land after that. To be honest with you, it will be hard to make a Sadies record without Dallas. It would be kind of weird,” Travis said. “We could go back to all the people we worked with in the past and pull out some collaborations. There’s been talk of that.”

Those collaborations are already happening, as The Sadies backed Canadian musician Rick White on his latest, simply titled “Rick White and The Sadies.” That record is set to drop June 7.

Bryant Liggett is a freelance writer and KDUR station manager. Reach him at liggett_b@fortlewis.edu.